Trend most pronounced in Melbourne and Sydney, reflecting sharper downturns in major cities
The number of home sellers making a profit has subsided as the property market continues its downward trend.
Loss-making sales grew the fastest in Melbourne and Sydney, according to CoreLogic data, reflecting the sharper downturns in the major cities.
There was a 6.4% increase in homes sold at a loss in Sydney in the June quarter and a 5.3% increase in Melbourne.
Home values in the two cities have fallen by 2.8% and 1.8%, respectively, during the same period.
“Multiple interest rate hikes have led to a weakening in the home values in Sydney and Melbourne, however residential resale results in some cities remain strong with significant gains across almost all resales,” Eliza Owen, CoreLogic’s head of research, said.
She said high-density, city-fringe markets were leading the downturn.
“Rising rates may be triggering more sales decisions among investors, contributing to the increase in loss-making unit sales across the city,” Owen said.
Interest rates are tipped to keep rising, with both ANZ and Westpac expecting the official cash rate to soar by another 1.00 percentage point this year.
Both banks are expecting another 0.50 percentage point lift in October, followed by 0.25 percentage point hikes in November and December.
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Mortgage holders have endured a cumulative 1.75 percentage points in interest rate hikes since May, causing monthly repayments to rise by hundreds of dollars.
Another rate hike of 0.5 percentage point would add $760 to monthly repayments on the average $500,000 loan with 25 years left to go, according to an analysis by RateCity.
Successive interest rate hikes are hitting first-home owners harder than established mortgage holders, according to Equifax data.
The data showed first-home buyers, who were more likely to have bought at the top of the market, were twice as likely to have fallen behind on their home loan repayments than other mortgage holders.
Meanwhile, total private sector credit – or outstanding loans – as measured by the Reserve Bank of Australia grew by 9.3% over the year to August.
This was the fastest pace in almost 14 years.
CommSec’s Ryan Felsman said the strong growth reflected expansionary policy settings during the pandemic that prompted households and businesses to increase their borrowings.
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However, housing credit eased off in August as rising interest rates started to take effect.
Felsman expects credit growth to keep slowing as the RBA keeps up its aggressive monetary policy tightening.
Australia’s economic troubles are far from over, the treasurer, Jim Chalmers, has warned.
“It’s pretty clear that the international situation is deteriorating,” he told the ABC’s 7.30 program.
The treasurer said he remained upbeat and optimistic about Australia’s outlook, with strong economic indicators, but warned of further economic pain in the near future.
“We’ve got a lot going for us,” Chalmers said. “But we’ve got some difficult global conditions to navigate in the meantime.
“It’s feeding through to higher inflation and falling real wages and rising interest rates at home and that will have an impact on our own growth prospects in the domestic economy.”
Consumers have been warned to brace for higher petrol prices as the fuel excise tax cut expires, and the prospect of elevated gas prices in the long term.
The opposition leader, Peter Dutton, said the government had failed to reduce energy bills as promised.
“They told the public before the election on 97 occasions that they were going to guarantee a price reduction of $275 in people’s power bills – they refuse to mention that figure any day since the election,” he said.